One of my dear friends also went to Germany a few years back. When she returned, she was all about making pretzels. It was a compulsion I didn't quite understand then, but I do now.
FACT: Germans love pretzels. It is one of their big cultural icons. Germany, I think is the only place in the world where you will see a stroller with a plush toy pretzel hanging down for baby to play with (yes. I saw this.)
FACT: Germans make the best pretzels in the world. Once you eat a pretzel in Germany- like a fresh one, right out of the oven, you will have a hard time enjoying other pretzels again. As another friend of mine, who recently returned from a historic tour of Berlin told it:
"The other day I was at the mall with my friends, and we got soft pretzels from Auntie Anne's. Seriously, afterward I was in a horrible mood. My friend was all 'what's wrong? This is so good!' Ugh. It's just not the same, we don't make good pretzels."
Now I too am spoiled. It's hard to say what makes them better. The skin is um, snappier? And the insides are softer? It's just better, ok?
I forgot to mention that these pretzels are also HUGE. Holding a giant beer and a giant pretzel makes you feel like a kid. Literally because you seem very small in comparison to your edibles.